Marketing News, from Cyber Security to Holidays and More
Labor Day ushers in the fall and the upcoming holiday season. And, retailers and shoppers alike are preparing for holiday sales amid a pandemic. Through the uncertainty, the experts at Adlucent help partners maneuver the changing digital marketing and ecommerce landscape. To remain up-to-date as we publish the latest news, sign up for our email newsletter.
The holiday shopping season can bring out cybercriminals who prey on online shoppers. Some common cyber attacks and defense mechanisms against them are as follows:
Phishing - This is when attackers use an authentic-looking email to access victims’ usernames and passwords. To protect against this, users should be cautious and avoid clicking email links, keep patches up-to-date, and use antiviral software and multi-factor authentication.
In addition to communicating with customers, companies can help prevent scams by enabling multi-factor authentication and tools, such as:
- SPF (Sender Policy Framework) - prevents hackers from sending emails from the company IP address, thus sending any attempts to do so into the SPAM folder.
- DKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail) - places a digital signature to outgoing emails that verify the company server as an email source. Unless an attacker uses a company mail server, fraudulent emails will fail.
- DMARC (Domain Message Authentication Reporting) - obtains reports from email providers. With DMARC, email service providers like Gmail can be instructed to only deliver email that passes SPF and DKIM tests and provide notifications on purported company emails that do not.
XSS - “Cross-Site Scripting” is a vulnerability that occurs when users upload content such as comments or product reviews, etc. to websites. When doing so, attackers can inject malicious codes that are picked up by site visitors and attach to their browsers.
To protect against XSS attacks, companies should:
- Sanitize any user-submitted or 3rd-party data, scrubbing it of any potentially malicious code
- Place an application firewall like AWS on the front-end of the site
- Implement multi-factor authentication
SQLi - “SQL injection” is a weakness that attacks poor input sanitization on the database backend of company websites, such as contact forms or login boxes. If the data on a form, for example, is not properly sanitized, a hacker could retrieve or delete database content (or the entire database). Protect against SQLi the same way as XSS with one addition - a database backup.
Due to the pandemic, consumers are spending less time in physical stores and more time online. Shoppers and brands alike will need to adjust for the holiday season. Some brands like REI have restricted store layout while others offer contactless shopping and Buy-Online-Pickup-In-store. Now, more shopping decisions are made at home, and brands can facilitate this by creating a digital window shopping experience with the following paid and organic tools.
Pinterest holiday boards inspire ideas and help shoppers discover new products. For example, Adlucent client, Wine Enthusiast, created a useful Holiday 2020 board, and Adlucent details how brands can make their own Holiday 2020 board aligned with Pinterest’s 2020 trends. Furthermore, brands can use Facebook and Instagram Shops as great ways to showcase and sell products. Finally, Facebook Instant Experiences can heighten mobile presence and engage shoppers with interactive photos, visuals, and more.
Capturing major milestones may not properly utilize consumer data in a meaningful way in a post-pandemic world. The available large-scale data needs to be specified and simplified to be most useful. To do this, brands should:
- Assess current consumer datasets for economic, social, and political relevance;
- Extract any new information retrieved in campaigns post-COVID as the most relevant data;
- Re-trace the data of consumer journey paths to ensure relevance in today’s market;
- Verify the validity of all current data.
Knowing where consumers are in life and their needed support is also growing in importance.
Amazon Attribution (beta) – Amazon
Amazon Attribution is now in beta and available for free in the US and UK for Amazon Vendors, professional Sellers, and agencies with Amazon selling clients. This measurement and analytic tool helps brands properly measure the performance of their non-Amazon ads (display, search, social, video ads, and email marketing) across multiple channels and how their marketing strategy drives business to Amazon. Companies can use this high level of insight to help measure ad efficiency, optimize audience strategies, and plan.
Walmart+ Launches Sept 15, Offering Same-day Delivery, Gas Discounts and Cashierless Checkout for $98/yr – TechCrunch
Walmart+ will officially launch Sept 15, 2020, nationwide in over 4,700 stores. For a yearly fee of $98, Walmart shoppers in 2,700 stores can receive free same-day delivery on qualifying orders. Other Walmart+ savings include fuel discounts and a Scan and Go perk. Although Walmart says Walmart+ is not intended to compete with Amazon Prime, the comparison is inevitable. For now, Walmart+ lacks Amazon Prime’s millions of products with multiple delivery options. Walmart+ focuses on same-day delivery and, in time, its product offerings and member benefits are expected to grow.
The above overview highlights key news amid the changing digital marketing landscape as concern over COVID-19 and other industry shifts continue to affect business nationwide. Keep visiting the Adlucent blog for ongoing information and updates.